Seyyed Hasan Nasrallah
Political leader, philanthropist
Hassan Abdel Karim Nasrallah, also known as Hassan Nasrallah. He was born on August 31, 1960, in Beirut, Lebanon. He is a political leader and secretary-general of Hezbollah, Shia Islamic political party, and a social and paramilitary organization based in Lebanon from 1992. He is a Twelver Shia Islamic political party, social and paramilitary organisation based in Lebanon which seeks social justice through Islamic ideals.
Nasrallah was raised in eastern Beirut’s underprivileged Karantina district, where his father managed a small grocery store. Nasrallah was a devout follower of Islam as a child. Nasrallah joined Amal, a Lebanese Shia paramilitary organization with ties to Iran and Syria when the family was forced to escape south from Beirut due to the onset of civil war in Lebanon in 1975. Soon after, he travelled to Najaf, Iraq, to study at a Shia seminary. After hundreds of Lebanese students were expelled from Iraq in 1978, he returned to Lebanon and joined Amal, eventually becoming the group’s Al-Biq valley commander.
Following Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982, Nasrallah left Amal to join the fledgling Hezbollah organization, motivated by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution. Nasrallah climbed through Hezbollah’s military ranks in the late 1980s and became a key figure in the group’s conflicts with Amal. He travelled to Iran to deepen his religious education in Qom as his leadership potential became obvious. In 1989, he returned to Lebanon to fight until the civil war ended the following year. After his predecessor, Sheikh Abbas al-Musawi, was assassinated by an Israeli rocket in 1992, he took over as commander of Hezbollah.
Hezbollah’s current and third Secretary-General, Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah, is serving his sixth term. Hezbollah is a Lebanese Twelver Shia Islamic political, social, and militaristic group dedicated to social justice through Islamic precepts.
Hezbollah is still the de facto security force in southern Lebanon, and its military presence can be felt all over the country. Nasrallah’s military victories in the late 1990s are credited with prompting Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000, and the repelling of Israeli soldiers in July 2006 elevated Nasrallah’s popularity even more. During the Syrian civil war, Hezbollah fighters were strengthening the Syrian regime, and their presence has forced DA’ISH out.
Hezbollah has also gained strong local support in Lebanon’s mostly Shia areas through building a social assistance system that includes schools, clinics, and homes. These welfare programmes are well-managed and competitive with those provided by the government, allowing the group to appeal to a wider audience. Al Manar, a powerful television channel, is also owned by Hezbollah.
Nasrallah’s popularity rose shortly after the 2006 Israeli-Palestinian conflict when many Sunni Muslims looked to him as a defiant figure against Israel. He is usually regarded as one of the conflict’s vectors. Nasrallah recently declared “success” in Syria’s war, adding that “scattered fights” remained.
Nasrallah has been a vocal critic of recent Israeli peace overtures, and he recently met with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Lebanon for the first time in 30 years. In addition, the aftermath of the massive blast in Beirut in August 2020 has resulted in a politically and economically disastrous situation.